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ISMAIL I.

CHAPTER LXII

THE   RISE   OF   THE   SAFAVI   DYNASTY
As when the Tartar from his Russian foe,
By Astracan, over the snowy plains,
Retires, or Bactrian Sophi, from the horns
Of Turkish crescent, leaves all waste beyond
The realm of Aladule, in his retreat
To Tauris or Casbeen.
Paradise Lost, Book X. lines 431-6.
The Ancestors of the Safavi 'Dynasty.—The Safari
dynasty traced its descent from Musa Kazim, the seventh
Imam and younger brother of Ismail, who is referred to
in Chapter LL The family had been settled at Ardebil
for many generations and was highly esteemed, especially
one member called Safi-u-Din, or the "Purity of the
Faith/' a title from which the dynasty took its name.
In equal esteem was his son Sadr-u-Din, who received a
visit from Tamerlane, and on being offered a boon asked
the release of Turkish prisoners brought from Diarbekir.
Tamerlane acceded to the request, and the captives, after
recovering their liberty, declared themselves the disciples
of the Shaykh of Ardebil. Their descendants, emigrating
by thousands into Gilan, aided his family to found a
dynasty,
Khoja Ali, the next head of the family, proceeded on
a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, where, according to Malcolm,
his tomb was still shown a century ago as that of the
"Shaykh of Persia/' Junayd, his successor, attracted so
many disciples that Jahan Shah, the Kara Kuyunlu Prince,
drove him into exile/ He thereupon proceeded to the
Court of Uzun Hasan at Diarbekir, where he was received
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